Wave Motion Tai Chi

At LCTKD we teach traditional Yang Style Tai Chi using an interpretation called “wave motion.”  Wave motion is not a new style of Tai Chi, but a way of interpreting the less discussed transitional movements - how you get from one posture to another.  In very simple terms, it has two elements to it.  

Firstly, you pre-position the feet.  Imagine you are facing left with your left foot forward, and going to turn to the right with your right foot forward. You could just turn to your right. Using wave motion, instead of just turning, you take your weight back over your right foot, turn your left toes in, bring your weight over your left foot, and step out with the right.  This sequencing greatly reduces the torque on the knee, making it much safer for the older body, and especially for people with any damage to hips or knees.  

Secondly, in the transition from one movement to another, where there is disagreement or ambiguity amongst different Tai Chi sources about how to effect the transition, you choose the approach that emphasises fluidity, and the feeling of a “wave.”  This approach is less like the transition a martial artist would make if they were fighting at speed, but it has the effect of increasing the flow of the body’s vital energy, Qi, or Ch’i, which is central to Tai Chi’s healing quality.  

Put the two together, and you get a flowing Tai Chi form that has the look of a wave to it, and feels filled with Qi.   

Turn the sound down when you watch this “wave motion” video featuring our Chief Instructor Neil R. Hall on a summer’s day at the beach in England’s Weston-Super-Mare!

(If you can’t see it in your browser, click here to watch on YouTube.)

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